It all began when I applied to Alex Chang & Co (ACC) to join their pupillage programme. During my interview, I was informed of the requirement to undergo a mini pupillage at ACC. This came as a surprise to me as it was a first that I have heard of. Soon enough, I began my mini pupillage at ACC. On my first day, I was given an excerpt to read which contained cases adopting commentary from the Companies Winding Up Handbook which Mr Alex Chang edited. I was impressed at it is not often you are given the opportunity to undergo a mini pupillage under a master who has contributed in the writing of legal handbook and one who was afforded credit for it.
On that same day, I met the legal associate in ACC, Miss Jess Pang. Miss Jess first asked me to look through a number of documents and offer my insight on whether any further points could be added. I was excited for the task ahead and offered her my opinion after going through the documents. I was glad to be recognized and given the chance to contribute input. My main task then began with the preparation of an index and documents due to the Court of Appeal. Although it may seem mundane, it was also a task which required focus and dedication as one small mistake would result in additional hours of rectification. When it was finally completed, I was entrusted to deliver said index and documents to the Court of Appeal in Putrajaya on my own. I am thankful that I did not work on this main task alone. During this time, I worked with the secretaries in ACC and got a feel of what the culture and atmosphere in ACC was like. It was definitely a fast paced working environment which required hardwork, commitment and dedication.
The next two weeks was definitely a roller coaster ride. It consisted of me doing various work such as photocopying and scanning materials, conducting research, translations, preparation of chronologies and headnotes within a short span of time. I must thank Miss Lim Wen Mi for being patient with me during my mini pupillage and showing me how to “do the necessary” also known as correctly photocopying, scanning and doing all the filing at ACC. I would have been terribly lost and confused without her. Thanks to her, I also learnt that acknowledgments are extremely important. Besides mailing out the correspondences which was part of the learning process, I was also required to always ensure that all proof of posting was properly filed and organized.
On certain days, I accompanied Mr Alex Chang to court and was given the opportunity to sit in chambers with him before a judge. It was a new experience for me. One time, I accompanied Mr Alex Chang to court to witness the admission of pupils to the High Court of Malaya as an Advocate and Solicitor. It was an interesting experience to listen to the pupils speeches being read before them and to hear Mr Alex Chang call a “No objection” on their admission to the Malaysian Bar. I understood that it was a valuable moment in those individuals’ lives and was grateful to have witnessed it.
To sum up, my days at ACC braced through quickly. Besides learning all of the above, I understood the meaning of being tenacious. If there was a task ahead, it was pertinent that we placed great effort into completing it. That was apparent when members of ACC would dedicate late nights to complete a task and meet urgent deadlines. It simply showed me that they did not take their work lightly. I also understood the value of communication with my colleagues which often took place during our lunches together.
I am grateful for the opportunity afforded to me by Mr Alex Chang. My time at ACC showed me that litigation is hardcore and not for the faint heart. Working at ACC made me realize that you have to devote your time, energy and skills in completing the tasks at hand. One must also be ready to be flexible enough in order to learn new things. I am thankful for the moments we laughed until we cried as a way to de-stress. I realize that the road to becoming a great litigator is not a smooth nor easy one. I am simply grateful that ACC offered me an avenue to learn, realize my mistakes and grow as a student and an individual.